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Transcript 41089

Radio interview with Terry Siva, Triple M Albany

Photo of Turnbull, Malcolm

Turnbull, Malcolm

Period of Service: 15/09/2015 to 24/08/2018

More information about Turnbull, Malcolm on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 02/08/2017

Release Type: Transcript

Transcript ID: 41089

Subject(s): Albany visit; Gay marriage; Schools; GST; Meeting with Premier McGowan; Betoota Advocate

TERRY SIVA:

Right now, an honour to be speaking to the leader of our great country, the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister - good morning.

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah, good morning, it is great to be with you. I’m really looking forward to joining you down in Albany this morning and joining Rick, he’s a great local Member and a ferocious advocate, a very persuasive advocate for his electorate and for Albany, in fact.

TERRY SIVA:

He’s been a loyal servant for O’Connor for a number of years.

Prime Minister, the big story we start off with, you’ve been busy on the phones overnight because there are some reports that some MPs want to cross the floor on the issue of same sex marriage and push for a conscience vote rather than a plebiscite. How close are we to resolving the situation? Because, would you say it’s getting out of hand and not giving Australia a very good look?

PRIME MINISTER:

It’s a pretty straightforward issue. We went to the election with a clear commitment to hold a national vote on the issue and give every Australian a say on the issue of same sex marriage.

That vote would have been held months ago, it would have been held more than six months ago had it not been for the obstruction of the Labor Party.

Now, they’re playing politics with that. They don’t care about gay marriage, or whether gay people can get married. They’re only interested in politics and playing games.

So I call on Bill Shorten to live up to the commitment he made actually, to the Australian Christian Lobby directly in 2013 that he would support a popular vote, a public vote on this.

If he were to do that then it would be held. I think it would be carried. You know, people have different views but everyone would get their say and then the matter would be decided.

So that’s the commitment we took to the election and that remains our policy.

It’s a very straightforward democratic proposition.

TERRY SIVA:

Would it be expensive to run a plebiscite? Wouldn’t it just be easier to discuss it in Parliament?

PRIME MINISTER:

Well I mean it has a cost, but obviously democracy has a cost, but we made that commitment at the last election, it remains our policy.

You know, look, I don’t want to distract you from this issue but I’ve been here in Western Australia now for three days or so, and met hundreds of people and only one of them has raised the issue with me. It gets raised by the journalists a lot, but everyone else I’m talking to wants to talk about jobs or employment, investment, what we’re doing to get young people into jobs.

I’ve got no doubt they’ll be talking about the NAPLAN results today and why we’re not getting better results in our schools despite all the money we’re spending and we are spending a lot more money.

In fact, Western Australia got a very raw deal from the previous Labor Government with their very confused and inconsistent school funding deals.

We’ve now got one national schools funding policy, which is national, consistent, transparent and needs-based. And that’s going to see very substantial growth in funding, particularly in Western Australia, for Western Australian Government schools including Albany Senior High School which I’ll be visiting today.

They’ll be getting about $15 million in additional funding from the Federal Government over the next ten years.

TERRY SIVA:

Great to be having a chat with the leader of this great nation, the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull. He’s going to be heading to Albany in the next hour or so, off to the National Anzac Centre, visiting local students at ASHS and also heading to a civic reception at Centennial Stadium. Hopefully the weather will roll out the red carpet.

The Prime Minister is going to stay with us, we’ve got to talk about some other key issues here in Western Australia including a talk about the GST share and other local stuff on the agenda as well. The Prime Minister, exclusively here on Triple M.

Prime Minister of Australia, Malcolm Turnbull is here with us on Albany’s 783 Triple M – he’s coming to Albany later on this morning at the request of our local Federal Member for O’Connor Rick Wilson. So he’s off to the National Anzac Centre later today, he’ll be visiting ASHS, Albany Senior High School and attending a civic reception out at Centennial Stadium and the Honourable Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia is on the line now.

Prime Minister – GST here in Western Australia, been a huge talking point and sore point for quite some time. You said it doesn’t pass the pub test.

PRIME MINISTER:

That’s true. It certainly doesn’t.

TERRY SIVA:

What do you mean by that Prime Minister?

PRIME MINISTER:

Well what I mean is that when you’re getting 30 cents or 34 cents in the dollar it just isn’t fair.

You know, whether, look, everyone understands in Australia that there is a system for providing more money for the smaller states like South Australia and Tasmania that don’t have the same tax base or the Northern Territory so that their governments can provide comparable levels of service to those in larger states like Western Australia and Victoria and New South Wales and so forth – everyone understands that and that’s been going on for a long time. But when you’re getting down on the GST to only getting 34 cents in the dollar, that is just unfair.

And so I am the first Prime Minister to have called this out and recognised that something has to be done and what I have set out is a way in which I believe we can achieve that but obviously it is politically challenging and you understand that because the other states will complain if they feel they’re going to get less money.

There is a very good story, very good cover on The West Australian today reminding people that the, well there is a picture of me, I’m not talking about that, but the political message on the front cover of The West Australian is an important one, it’s that the heat has got to be on the Labor Party. Mark McGowan, I’ll be saying this to him this afternoon – he’s a Labor Premier, he’s just been elected, well congratulations Mark – what are you doing about your party’s federal policy?

Bill Shorten has been nothing but critical of any move to change or review the way the GST is allocated.

TERRY SIVA:

What is your relationship with the WA Premier, Prime Minister, Mark McGowan? Have you caught up with him on your trip so far?

PRIME MINISTER:

Not so far but I’m seeing him later today, I understand, and I already had plans to see him on Thursday I think but I’m looking forward to seeing him. I get on well with him. I have never had a cross word with him and I look forward to working constructively with him to jointly invest more, particularly in infrastructure in Western Australia. I look forward to the West Australian Government, for example, putting more money as Colin Barnett’s government did, his Liberal Government did, putting money into regional communications.

TERRY SIVA:

Malcolm Turnbull, the Honourable Prime Minister of Australia is here with us. Malcolm, finally, I saw a video of you with the Betoota boys during the WA state election campaign. You don’t mind having a Betoota brew do you?

PRIME MINISTER:

No, well I don’t. It was funny though, what they did, they are characters those young blokes – I mean you know the story that Betoota is a place that has basically, it’s a place that has still got a pub but I’m not even sure there is anyone at the pub anymore, it was one bloke living at the pub, but it is essentially a town that has effectively been depopulated so it isn’t exactly a thriving metropolis like Albany. It’s a very satirical exercise but what they did was you’d probably notice that the beers moved, it appeared that I was drinking a schooner every few minutes – what the guys were doing was almost by sleight of hand moving the beer glasses around in front of me.

(Laughter)

TERRY SIVA:

Cheeky.

PRIME MINISTER:

So every time a camera cut to it it looked as though I had had another schooner.

TERRY SIVA:

Prime Minister, while you’re in Albany could I offer you maybe some Wilson’s Brewing? They do some good stuff – Rough Seas, look out for that.

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah, sure – very happy to try the local brew. Hope to see you there shortly.

TERRY SIVA:

The Honourable Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia is about to step onto a plane and make his way to Albany.

Prime Minister, again thank you so much for having a chat with us and enjoy your time here in Western Australia.

PRIME MINISTER:

I am enjoying it and I look forward to meeting more West Australians and talking about all the big issues that are of concern to them. Thanks very much.

[ENDS]

Transcript 41089